Christmas for non-Christians


As Bill O’Reilly dedicates his air time on FOX News to the “War on Christmas”, the question one may ask is, ‘what do non-Christians do on Christmas?’ While O’Reilly and other conservative media gurus are complaining about whether or not it is alright for a sales person at the stores to wish the customers “Merry Christmas”, some Americans might feel left out at this time of the year. The Jews have Hanukkah and the African-Americans have Kwanza. The Muslims, however, do not have any holiday at this time of the year. The last time the Muslims celebrated their religious holiday, Eid ul Fitr, around the same time as Christmas and Hanukka was on December 28, 2000. But as the Islamic calendar is based on the lunar phases, it will be many years from now when Eid ul Fitr will fall during the Christmas holiday.

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  1. Quoting from CNN:

    By Eric Marrapodi, CNN Belief Blog Co-Editor

    (CNN) – Two days before Christmas, Imam Mohamed Magid, the executive director at the All Dulles Area Muslim Society, preached about Jesus at Friday prayers.

    “We live in a country with a majority of Christians, where Christmas is a major holiday… It’s a reminder we do believe in Jesus. Jesus’ position in Islam is one of the highest prophets in Islam,” Magid said, adding that Muslims view Jesus as a prophet on par with Abraham, Moses, Noah and Mohammad.

    Often when he says the name of Mohammad or Jesus in conversation, Magid adds the Islamic honorific “Peace be upon him” after his name.

    “Jesus is a unifying figure, unifying Muslims and Christians,” he said. The Quran, the Islamic scriptures, makes specific mention of Jesus and of his mother Mary. “It’s very interesting that there are many places where the prophet (Mohammad) is quoting Jesus.”

    Christmas has a way of bleeding into other faiths in America. The Christian holiday celebrating the birth of Jesus Christ in a manger in Bethlehem 2000 some odd years ago is ubiquitous across the country, even if the American tradition has leaned away from the sacred and toward the secular.

    Christmas at every corner can be somewhat problematic for those who are not in the estimated 246 million Christians living in the United States. But for some faiths, the season brings reminders of their own traditions.

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